If the Lord Wills

I don't have much time tonight as I'm preparing to leave for Uganda tomorrow (technically today) as well as thinking about dorm chapel in the morning.  But I wanted to post one last time before the two-week pause.

As I leave, I am reminded of James 4:13-15:  "Come now, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.'  Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow.  You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.  Instead, you ought to say, 'If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that.'"

I plan to be back in twelve days.  But I might not be.  I plan to write another post and study for more seminary classes and help guys in the dorm and see my beloved Cindi again.  But I might not.  And this is not just because I'll be on three flights for twenty hours from Los Angeles to London to Nairobi to Uganda, or because I'll be in a far more disease-ridden place than I'm used to, or because I'll meet people with AIDS.

It's because I am a vapor.

This makes each day so precious, each breath so valuable, each decision so serious.  Life was not given to us as a game to be played but as a mission to be accomplished.  That mission is to glorify God in the world and to advance His kingdom at all personal cost, with the weapons of love and truth.  And we may not have tomorrow to do it.

Live today.  I may get to do it in Africa for the next twelve days, but think about what you get to do.  Touch a life.  Speak the truth.  Study hard.  Think about the cross.  Visit a widow.  Pray for people.  Dream of causes bigger than yourself and then live Christ in the details and the mundane.  You have two options every day when you wake up.  You can do whatever your hand finds to do with all your might or you can coast.  Remembering that your life is like dew on the grass on a summer morning will help you to choose the former.  And forgetting it will always lead to the latter.

You may not have tomorrow, and that means something for today.

It is entirely possible that when the wheels of my plane lift off the runway at Los Angeles Intenational Airport at 5:15pm on Friday, January 27, I will have touched the ground of my homeland for the final time.  I do not mean to be morbid – I don't expect to die.  But I only expect to live if the Lord wills.

There is no day like today, whether you're departing soon for a place that you have always dreamed of visiting or you're putting one foot in front of the other in the grind of daily faithfulness.  You do not have yesterday and you do not have tomorrow.  You only have today.  Live today.  And by the grace of God, I'll be living with you.

I'll see you when I get back – if the Lord wills.


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